Shinzo Abe’s coronavirus mask plan slammed by Japanese residents
Commuters wearing face masks make their way to work in Tokyo.
Here, that oughta hold ya.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is being skewered by his own people after floating a proposal of mailing just two reusable cloth face masks to each household sometime later this month, reported CNN.
The plan was quickly ridiculed by social media users, who sent the hashtag “screw your two masks” trending on Twitter Wednesday.
Besides the idea’s obvious shortcoming of how it affects households of three or more occupants, many critics slammed the plan over its late expected date.
Abe stated the government would prioritize mailing out masks to nearly 50 million households in coronavirus hot zones at the end of April.
Although cloth masks do not work as effectively as surgical masks, they are easier to produce en masse.
The prime minister also has steadfastly refused to declare a nationwide state of emergency despite 2,300 reported cases and, more alarmingly, only 30,000 residents being tested so far.
Health officials fear that the relatively low infection rate will make residents overconfident and provide them with false hope that they will remain healthy if venturing out in public.
Medical experts on Wednesday bemoaned that Japan’s health-care system would be ill-equipped to handle a torrent of COVID-19 patients if the infection rate grows exponentially.
Last week, Tokyo’s governor implored her nearly 14 million residents to work from home and steer clear of public gatherings until April 12, according to CNN. But the Japanese capital has lengthened that date to May 6 as public facilities and schools remain shuttered.